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RAV 4, 2006 difficulty starting and Check 4WD System message


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Hi 

I have 2 problems but i'm not sure if they are linked but they both occurred in a similar time frame. Purchased the rav 4 2006 diesel in october as my first car, had no issues no lights nothing. I got a cautionary full service done from toyota and only issues that came up were rear brake pipes corroded(only an advisory), i've left it.

Pbrlm 1 - About 2 months after purchase and now in full winter I noticed that the engine has difficulty starting on the 1st start of the day. Takes minimum 2 attempts with the 1st always cranking the engine but no ignition. NOTE - there are no changes to performance or driving characteristics. Could this be due to the cold? I have never experienced this with cars even older than this(saab1999, honda2003). I've tired waiting for the car to "heat" up by tuning all the electronics on  and high heating but still same result, done this for 30s, 60s, and even 10 mins but nothing. 

Pbrlm 2 - This occurred soon after having the engine start issue started. Once driving about 5 to 10  minutes into a journey the car pops up with a "Check 4WD system" on the dash LCD. First 2 weeks i tired to find the issues and test when this issue occurs but found no pattern other then the time it takes for it too occur. the issues only happens when driving and does not occur when stationary. Now its been a while since i had a look( nearly 3 months). But now nearly in march the "time frame" is changing one drive it took 20 minutes for  this to occur and some days the usual 5 - 10.  NOTE - there are no changes to performance or driving characteristics, i've tested everything and functionally can not find an issue but the message keeps showing. My first drive in the car was 80 miles and this issue did not show up.

I can not find any similar accounts for this online and currently don't have the means nor a reason to take it in a garage as functionally the cars hasn't changed from the day I bought it.  

Could the cold(0C-10C) have cause both these issues. Could it be the toyota service where they messed something up while doing their tests? I really don't know anything would help. 

Any help is much appreciated, 

Thank you 🙂

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Hi Anshul, and welcome to the Toyota Owners Club.

How many miles has your Rav 4 done?????  Is the car starting ok other times of the day after its been started first time of the day?  I dont understand what you saying in Pbrim 1 - you say "Ive tried waiting for the car to "heat" up by turning all the electronics on and high heating"? Can you clrify what you mean?

You probably know petrol cars have spark plugs to ognite the fuel, diesel cars depend on compression of the fuel to make it explode. In cold weather this can be a problem, so its common to find diesel engines have a glow plug in the engine cylinders which warm up the cylinder to help the compression heat explode the fuel. One or more of these glow plugs (one per cyclinder) maybe dodgy, they tend to wear in time - thats why I asked how many miles has the Rav 4 done.  They not particularly expensive to replace and make a big difference in starting.   Maybe something else, but thats my first pointer.

                                                       

 

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Hi - I've no direct experience of the issues but a few thoughts on things to consider:

1) My car starts well but compared to others I have owned it is just slightly slower to fire, as a result my brain is conditioned to release the key just a little too early from time to time requiring a second start attempt. Perhaps you have the same brain/muscle memory?

2) How old is the Battery - if you notice the problem mostly when it cold and first drive of the day then there's a chance the Battery is on its last legs and is lacking its youthful oomph to easily get the car going. You can get them checked at Halfords and the like if you want but I'm not sure the tests are hugely reliable and conclusive. A better guide is if there's a date on the Battery so you know how long it has been in; personally I'd change it as a matter of course unless you're sure it's quite new. I'd probably buy a slightly uprated one too as it will do no harm.

3) As a slight alternative to the above if you have a trickle charger then stick it on overnight and see how it starts in the morning, again gives you a clue if it starts fine that the cold/age is causing it to discharge overnight.

4) I'm also a bit confused about your turning the electrics on comment, but if I've understood it right this is the opposite of what you want to do if you've got power issues when starting. You need to turn everything off and start the engine.

5) As per Catlover's comment the glow plugs may need changing but if this is an issue you'll likely get a fault code and an engine management light - I do on my car but since it actually starts fairly well even with the warning I'm leaving it to do the plugs in the summer. You could try double warming the plugs ie turn the ignition to the point where the glow plug light illuminates and then goes out and then repeating. Speaking of which are you waiting until the plug light goes out before cranking the engine?

6) I've no knowledge of 4WD error codes but chances are it's linked to the above and in my experience poor power can cause a number of gremlins so focus on that first and see if the 4wd problem resolves itself.

Good luck and feel free to bounce ideas around - if you make progress/resolve the issue please post back so others can use your experience for reference.

 

 

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On 2/22/2021 at 6:10 PM, Catlover said:

Hi Anshul, and welcome to the Toyota Owners Club.

How many miles has your Rav 4 done?????  Is the car starting ok other times of the day after its been started first time of the day?  I dont understand what you saying in Pbrim 1 - you say "Ive tried waiting for the car to "heat" up by turning all the electronics on and high heating"? Can you clrify what you mean?

You probably know petrol cars have spark plugs to ognite the fuel, diesel cars depend on compression of the fuel to make it explode. In cold weather this can be a problem, so its common to find diesel engines have a glow plug in the engine cylinders which warm up the cylinder to help the compression heat explode the fuel. One or more of these glow plugs (one per cyclinder) maybe dodgy, they tend to wear in time - thats why I asked how many miles has the Rav 4 done.  They not particularly expensive to replace and make a big difference in starting.   Maybe something else, but thats my first pointer.

                                                       

 

Hi Joe thanks for your reply. 

The cars done 112,000 miles, yes the car starts fine other times of the day after the first start. 

to clarify my "heat up " comment - ive heard from friends mention your compression point. So to explain further the first start of a cold day id get in and turn the car on using the key but not try to start the engine. id leave the electronics on for a bit to attempt to warm up some parts of the engine before the first start. my first thought were to the fuel filter jam or something, i didn't really know. but the goal was to give all the electrics on the engine/ fuel related time to get going, maybe unfreeze. after its started up i  can leave the car for 4 or 5 hours and come back to it starting without the wait and on first key turn.  today we had our first warm day at around 15C and the car started fine on first attempt, though did sound slugish. 

I think you're onto something with the glow plugs ill do a bit more digging and probably get time looked at. 

Thank you for your response 

Anshul

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On 2/22/2021 at 7:14 PM, RAV4-D4D said:

Hi - I've no direct experience of the issues but a few thoughts on things to consider:

1) My car starts well but compared to others I have owned it is just slightly slower to fire, as a result my brain is conditioned to release the key just a little too early from time to time requiring a second start attempt. Perhaps you have the same brain/muscle memory?

2) How old is the battery - if you notice the problem mostly when it cold and first drive of the day then there's a chance the battery is on its last legs and is lacking its youthful oomph to easily get the car going. You can get them checked at Halfords and the like if you want but I'm not sure the tests are hugely reliable and conclusive. A better guide is if there's a date on the battery so you know how long it has been in; personally I'd change it as a matter of course unless you're sure it's quite new. I'd probably buy a slightly uprated one too as it will do no harm.

3) As a slight alternative to the above if you have a trickle charger then stick it on overnight and see how it starts in the morning, again gives you a clue if it starts fine that the cold/age is causing it to discharge overnight.

4) I'm also a bit confused about your turning the electrics on comment, but if I've understood it right this is the opposite of what you want to do if you've got power issues when starting. You need to turn everything off and start the engine.

5) As per Catlover's comment the glow plugs may need changing but if this is an issue you'll likely get a fault code and an engine management light - I do on my car but since it actually starts fairly well even with the warning I'm leaving it to do the plugs in the summer. You could try double warming the plugs ie turn the ignition to the point where the glow plug light illuminates and then goes out and then repeating. Speaking of which are you waiting until the plug light goes out before cranking the engine?

6) I've no knowledge of 4WD error codes but chances are it's linked to the above and in my experience poor power can cause a number of gremlins so focus on that first and see if the 4wd problem resolves itself.

Good luck and feel free to bounce ideas around - if you make progress/resolve the issue please post back so others can use your experience for reference.

 

 

Hi john, Thanks for your reply 

Ill address your points below 

1) yes initially i too let go of the key too early, but once i was use to it i kept noticing the issue and there have been times where ive had the starter turning for about 10 to 15 seconds and still nothing. 

2 / 3 ) yes that's a good shout ill check the Battery out, i do not know its age. I have a trickle charger so i will try that out at some point 

4) so basically long story short it was an attempt to unfreeze any electronic parts. please read my reply to Catlover i explain it there. 

5) AHHH i think we have our issue. No i do not see any glow plug lights. I believe it looks like a spring? or a coil of sort? I dont think ive ever seen that light come on so yes the glow plug are probably my issue. Or the lights not working 😕. i'll have to check it all out. 

6) yes that was my hope that it wasn't too big of an issue as there was no impact on performance, but yes ill check out the Battery and glow plug stuff out first now and see what happens next 

Thank you for your help 

Anshul

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Anshul, I would seriously be looking at the glow plugs.  Worst case scenario they will cost you £50-£60 for a set of four. If you handy with a spanner you can replace yourself.  I would start now by spraying the glow plugs with WD40 so to soak the threads and help release them.  Just the thread area as they go into the cylinder head. Do it then let the WD40 soak. Any decent garage should be able to do the test if you feel you cannot.                              
Assume the Battery is not the problem for the moment, It is not being kind on the Battery to keep having difficulties starting, so this problem needs sorting. You could also get the Battery checked out.                           
I cannot think of any reason why leaving the electrics on (when the car won’t start) is going to warm up the engine.  The engine running will warm up the engine as the coolant will warm as the engine runs and gives off heat.  The glow plugs are on for a period of time and then switch off (or they will take too much power from the battery). So, leaving electrics on is only making the Battery do work that is not achieving anything and weakening the Battery.    
Soon, summer will be here, the starting problem may improve due to the warmth in the air. But it will be short iced, soon, colder days will follow and you be back where you are now, so now is the time to sort.  
 

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Glow plugs on AD engines are fairly rare and are a minitored circuit so a faulty glow plug usually sets a warning light, far more common on AD engines and are nearly always highlighted by cold weather is the SCV this will stick when cold stopping fuel supply and resulting in extended cranking of the engine before it will start. There is even a TSB from Toyota concerning it:

EG-0132T-1110-EN

Subject: 1AD- FTV and 2AD-FTV Engine - Hard to start in cold condition

Models: AURIS, COROLLA, COROLLA VERSO, RAV4, AVENSIS

Model codes: ADE150, AUR10, ALA30, ADT250, ADT251

DESCRIPTION OF PHENOMENON Customer may complain about engine that is difficult (delayed) to start in cold condition but cranking speed is normal. For low cranking speed (< 200rpm) or no cranking, please follow the relevant diagnostic procedure in repair manual.

PRODUCTION CHANGE Improved design of the Suction Control Valve (SCV) to improve sliding performance and newly developed software to increase target fuel pressure in cold condition.

image.thumb.png.1f03291bf110877c594d2890d9b1c5c7.png

image.thumb.png.342fcc453e0cf660061ac4cf2083a4bd.png

image.thumb.png.4199af6b5114b86df8967c9fcaaa9e83.png 

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On 2/27/2021 at 6:01 AM, Catlover said:

Anshul, I would seriously be looking at the glow plugs.  Worst case scenario they will cost you £50-£60 for a set of four. If you handy with a spanner you can replace yourself.  I would start now by spraying the glow plugs with WD40 so to soak the threads and help release them.  Just the thread area as they go into the cylinder head. Do it then let the WD40 soak. Any decent garage should be able to do the test if you feel you cannot.                              
Assume the battery is not the problem for the moment, It is not being kind on the battery to keep having difficulties starting, so this problem needs sorting. You could also get the battery checked out.                           
I cannot think of any reason why leaving the electrics on (when the car won’t start) is going to warm up the engine.  The engine running will warm up the engine as the coolant will warm as the engine runs and gives off heat.  The glow plugs are on for a period of time and then switch off (or they will take too much power from the battery). So, leaving electrics on is only making the battery do work that is not achieving anything and weakening the battery.    
Soon, summer will be here, the starting problem may improve due to the warmth in the air. But it will be short iced, soon, colder days will follow and you be back where you are now, so now is the time to sort.  
 

Hi sorry for the slow replies got a lot going on, yeah im will be taking it to a garage soon to get them checked, but i've watched a couple of videos on how to do it so if i get the time i will just do it myself. So recently its been staring fine due to the warmer weather so i dont think it was a Battery issue. Only time that i haven't heard much about is if this can cause lasting damage. I haven't fixed this issue in months and am wondering if not having the glow plus working properly might have damaged parts of the engine. 

Thanks 

Anshul 

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On 2/28/2021 at 6:37 PM, Dippy said:

I heard modern batteries have a date stamp MM/YY by one of the terminals. If it's more than 4 years old consider another.

Hi, yeah i did try to find the date on mine but it only has the year fitted markers, but non of the years have been marked lol. so i don't know how old the Battery is but form the look its seems new ish, like compared to the dirt on rest of the engine bay has, the Battery is pretty new looking. (watching detective movies pays off kids XD) , plus as its been warmer these past few days the cars has been starting much better. so i dont think its the Battery. looking very likely to be glow plugs

Thanks 

Anshul

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23 hours ago, Devon Aygo said:

Glow plugs on AD engines are fairly rare and are a minitored circuit so a faulty glow plug usually sets a warning light, far more common on AD engines and are nearly always highlighted by cold weather is the SCV this will stick when cold stopping fuel supply and resulting in extended cranking of the engine before it will start. There is even a TSB from Toyota concerning it:

EG-0132T-1110-EN

Subject: 1AD- FTV and 2AD-FTV Engine - Hard to start in cold condition

Models: AURIS, COROLLA, COROLLA VERSO, RAV4, AVENSIS

Model codes: ADE150, AUR10, ALA30, ADT250, ADT251

DESCRIPTION OF PHENOMENON Customer may complain about engine that is difficult (delayed) to start in cold condition but cranking speed is normal. For low cranking speed (< 200rpm) or no cranking, please follow the relevant diagnostic procedure in repair manual.

PRODUCTION CHANGE Improved design of the Suction Control Valve (SCV) to improve sliding performance and newly developed software to increase target fuel pressure in cold condition.

image.thumb.png.1f03291bf110877c594d2890d9b1c5c7.png

image.thumb.png.342fcc453e0cf660061ac4cf2083a4bd.png

image.thumb.png.4199af6b5114b86df8967c9fcaaa9e83.png 

thanks this is great 

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A bad Battery will perform better when the weather is warmer too so nothing you've said rules it out I'm afraid.

As per my post and Devon Aygo, if the plugs are bad you'll have an engine management light come on - you haven't said you have one so plugs is unlikely.

Of course it's your call and it's going to be tricky to tell with the weather warming but I'd still be popping a new Battery in, or maybe waiting till next winter and letting the problem occur again so any attempts to fix can be confirmed as working or not.

Whatever you decide, good luck and please post any outcome.

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